Police used tear gas on the Champs-Elysees after a day of largely peaceful demonstrations in Paris on the fifth straight weekend of protests by France’s “yellow vest” movement.
By Raphael Satter and Elena Becatoros, Associated Press
December 15 2018 6:55 PM
Police used tear gas on the Champs-Elysees after a day of largely peaceful demonstrations in Paris on the fifth straight weekend of protests by France’s “yellow vest” movement.
The demonstrations against France’s high cost of living — hit by cold weather, rain and recent concessions by French President Emmanuel Macron — were significantly smaller on Saturday than at previous rallies, some of which scarred parts of Paris with vandalism and looting.
A few thousand people marched up and down the famed shopping street in Paris, a spirited yet peaceful gathering that sunk into violence as the afternoon wore on.
Riot police clashed with demonstrators as the occasional tourist darted from their hotel or a brave Christmas shopper took a peek at the neighbourhood’s mostly boarded-up storefronts.
By late afternoon, a water cannon in a line of police vans confronting protesters sprayed water to disperse them.
Firefighters put out a blaze on a side street leading to the Champs-Elysees and limited scuffles broke out between protesters and police.
By early evening, police had cleared the avenue and re-opened it to traffic.
Protesters made it clear that they wanted to keep up the pressure, even if their numbers were far smaller than in previous weeks, which saw rioters smashing and looting stores and setting up burning barricades in the streets.

Continue reading...